Occupational Therapy Resume for a New Graduate (With Example)

By Indeed Editorial Team

Published 24 May 2022

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

Occupational therapy can be a rewarding career for those interested in helping people and working in health care. Writing a strong resume can be a useful way to find fulfilling work in this discipline. As a new graduate, by learning to write a resume you can impress potential employers and improve your chances of securing an interview. In this article, we examine how to craft an effective occupational therapy resume for recent graduates, with key elements, a template and an example resume to help you prepare your own.

Related: What Does an Occupational Therapist Do? (And How to Become One)

What is an occupational therapy resume for a new graduate?

An occupational therapy resume for a new graduate can be vital for securing post-graduate employment. Even without professional experience, your resume can highlight your placement training and educational achievements. Your resume can follow a standard format that emphasises key elements, such as your educational history and clinical and work experience, in reverse chronological order. You can also include your key skills and licencing information to strengthen your resume. Creating a strong occupational therapist resume and cover letter can help you impress hiring managers, earn an interview and secure a position.

Related: How to Write a Graduate Cover Letter (With Example)

Key elements of a recent graduate's occupational therapy resume

You can include a range of elements in your resume as a recent occupational therapy graduate. Here are some of those elements explained, in the order that they can appear in your resume:

Contact information

Write your contact information at the top of your resume, so hiring managers can quickly identify your application and contact you. This section may also include your full name, phone number, email, and location. It can be helpful to provide several ways of contacting you to make it as easy as possible for hiring managers to arrange an interview with you.

Career objective statement

Also known as a professional objective statement, this is a brief paragraph that explains your specific professional goals. This section provides a good opportunity for you to share your accomplishments as a recent graduate. You can use one to three sentences to highlight your education and achievements and outline any professional goals you have.

Education

As a recent graduate, your education may be the most important part of your resume. This can include details about what you studied, the institution you attended and the year you graduated. You may wish to include your majors and GPA if you believe these can benefit your application.

Awards and accomplishments

You can also list any relevant awards and accomplishments you achieved during your studies or fieldwork. This section can include formal awards, such as scholarships, fellowships or certificates from your university. You may also include any research presentations you made as an occupational therapy student, including poster presentations and published papers.

Licencing status

To show your level of qualification, you can present information about your licencing status as an occupational therapist. This can include details about the certification body and the dates you received or applied for a licence. If your licence is pending, you may still include it, with a note saying that you have not yet received it but expect to shortly.

Clinical experience

Occupational therapy courses typically include extensive clinical experience to help prepare students for their future careers. As a new graduate, you may wish to emphasise this experience in your resume, in place of professional experience. You can include details about your fieldwork experience, the facility and department that you worked for, the dates of your fieldwork and your duties and accomplishments for each experience.

Additional work experience

You can also highlight work experience from other industries. While these may not be as helpful as your education or clinical experience, showing that you have workplace skills and were a dedicated employee can impress hiring managers and improve your chances of selection. This section can include information about your job title, place and dates of employment and general tasks and responsibilities in the role.

Skills

You may wish to have a skills section at the end of your resume to emphasise your key technical and foundational skills. This section can show that despite having no professional experience as an occupational therapist, you have acquired the necessary skills from your education and fieldwork. You can include a range of soft and hard skills in this section to show that you understand both the industry and how to communicate with colleagues and patients.

Related: 20 Careers in Health Science

New graduate occupational therapy resume template

You can use this template when applying for occupational therapist roles as a recent graduate:

[Full name]

[City/suburb and state] | [Email address] | [Phone number]

Professional Summary

[A few sentences about your background in occupational therapy and any key qualifications you gained at university or internship placements]

Education

[Certification]
[Name of certifying organisation], [Year obtained]

[Certification]
[Name of certifying organisation], [Year obtained]

Awards and Accomplishments

  • [Title of award or presentation], [Year received]
    [Name of the association or awarding organisation]

  • [Title of award or presentation], [Year received]
    [Name of the association or awarding organisation]

  • [Title of award or presentation], [Year received]
    [Name of the association or awarding organisation]

  • [Title of award or presentation], [Year received]
    [Name of the association or awarding organisation]

Certification and Licencing

[OTBA licencing status], [Date of licensing]

Clinical Experience

[Name of the facility where fieldwork took place], [Location]
[Department or specialty], [Dates of fieldwork]

  • [Responsibilities and accomplishments]

  • [Responsibilities and accomplishments]

  • [Responsibilities and accomplishments]

  • [Responsibilities and accomplishments]

  • [Responsibilities and accomplishments]

[Name of the facility where fieldwork took place], [Location]
[Department or specialty], [Dates of fieldwork]

  • [Responsibilities and accomplishments]

  • [Responsibilities and accomplishments]

  • [Responsibilities and accomplishments]

[Name of the facility where fieldwork took place], [Location]
[Department or specialty], [Dates of fieldwork]

  • [Responsibilities and accomplishments]

  • [Responsibilities and accomplishments]

  • [Responsibilities and accomplishments]

Additional Work Experience

[Job title]
[Company name], [City, State]
[Dates of employment]

  • [Main job duties]

  • [Main job duties]

  • [Main job duties]

[Job title]
[Company name], [City, State]
[Dates of employment]

  • [Main job duties]

  • [Main job duties]

  • [Main job duties]

Skills

[Relevant skill], [Relevant skill], [Relevant skill], [Relevant skill], [Relevant skill], [Relevant skill]

Related: Top In-Demand Skills in Australia and Skills Shortage

Example of a new graduate occupational therapy resume

Here's an example of an occupational therapist resume for a new graduate:

Jane Smith

Occupational therapist | Macquarie Park, NSW | 0489 367 000 | Jane.Smith@email.com

Professional Summary

Highly driven occupational therapist who recently graduated from the University of Sailworth, seeking a full-time position. Committed to providing empathetic and patient-centred care that helps patients become independent and confident. Has clinical experience treating injured, ill and disabled patients.

Education

Master of Occupational Therapy
University of Sailworth, 2021

Bachelor of Applied Science (Occupational Therapy) with Honours
University of Sailworth, 2019

Awards and Accomplishments

  • The University of Sailworth School of Health Sciences Student Leadership Award
    The University of Sailworth, 2017

  • Douglas and Lola Douglas Scholarship in Health Sciences (Occupational Therapy)
    The University of Sailworth, 2018

Certification and Licencing

Occupational Therapy Board of Australia Certified, 2021

Clinical Experience

Sydney Occupational Therapy Centre, Harris Park, NSW
Surgery Rehabilitation Department, January 2021-October 2021

  • assisted with the development, execution and recording of treatment plans for over 100 patients

  • maintained patient records and worked with intake specialists to coordinate patient care

  • implemented home treatment plans by educating family members about appropriate care procedures and providing ongoing support throughout the process

  • connected with other health care providers and rehabilitation team members to collaborate on a successful patient treatment plan

  • worked with caretakers to ensure continuity of treatment programs after completing inpatient care regimens

Qualia Occupational Therapy for Children, Willoughby, NSW
Paediatric Rehabilitation Department, June 2020-October 2020

  • cared for paediatric patients with traumatic injuries, specialising in developing treatment plans for patients with mobility loss

  • supported patient rehabilitation and mobility by using biomechanical technology

  • assessed patients' home environments and recommended specific accommodations to fit patient needs and everyday independence

Better Rehab, Macquarie Park, NSW
Occupational therapy and speech therapy, January 2020-May 2020

  • worked with speech pathologists and mental health professionals to encourage patient rehabilitation and skills development

  • facilitated a range of tasks to help patients participate in recreational activities and life skills to encourage independence

  • helped families understand specific patient needs and developed treatment plans accordingly

Additional Work Experience

Pharmacist assistant
Priceline Pharmacy, North Sydney, NSW
2017-2019

  • moving orders

  • helping customers

  • answering the phone and making notes for the pharmacist

Piano tutor
Musical Kids, North Sydney, NSW
2015-2018

  • working with children

  • helping students read sheet music

  • teaching children to play songs, setting homework and preparing lessons

Skills

Written and verbal communication, problem solving, interpersonal skills, counselling, self-management, teamwork, communication, critical thinking

Please note that none of the companies, institutions or organisations mentioned in this article are affiliated with Indeed.

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